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Nature Publisher Launches PLoS ONE Competitor

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the peer-to-peer-review dept.

Science 62

linhares writes "Nature's Publishing Group is launching a new journal, Scientific Reports, announced earlier this month. The press release makes it clear that it is molded after PLoS ONE: 'Scientific Reports will publish original research papers of interest to specialists within a given field in the natural sciences. It will not set a threshold of perceived importance for the papers that it publishes; rather, Scientific Reports will publish all papers that are judged to be technically valid and original. To enable the community to evaluate the importance of papers post-peer review, the Scientific Reports website will include most-downloaded, most-emailed, and most-blogged lists. All research papers will benefit from rapid peer review and publication, and will be deposited in PubMed Central.' Perhaps readers may find it ironic that PLoS ONE, first dismissed by Nature as an 'online database' 'relying on bulk, cheap publishing of lower quality papers to subsidize its handful of high-quality flagship journals' seems to be setting the standards for 'a new era in publishing.'"

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YAY !! WE ARE ROLLING NOW !! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34987452)

To what end, I ask, to what end?

Re:YAY !! WE ARE ROLLING NOW !! (0)

WrongSizeGlass (838941) | more than 3 years ago | (#34987680)

To what end, I ask, to what end?

Um, I'm pretty sure the end will be the last page of the current issue.

Re:YAY !! WE ARE ROLLING NOW !! (2)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 3 years ago | (#34987694)

To the end of "Readers decide what research is the most relevant and important" rather than editors. "This is good science but we think it just isn't interesting to enough people, so we aren't going to publish it and you'll have to publish it in a lower tier journal" is a less than ideal situation, especially when which journals you publish in makes a difference on your CV. ... or am I responding to a nonsense, off topic post?

Re:YAY !! WE ARE ROLLING NOW !! (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34988136)

funny thing is, at least 5 Nobel laureates have published in PLoS ONE up to now (see wikipedia for the links). Nature will probably trickle down papers from their "top" journals down to this one: "Sorry, your paper cannot be accepted in Nature Neuroscience" but, should you choose to publish it in scientific reports, it is coming up next week. Please pay up."

Now, as Martin Fenner [plos.org] said, "Let's see how authors will respond to this and whether it will be possible 10 years from now to distinguish papers published in Nature, Nature Communications and Scientific Reports."

Re:YAY !! WE ARE ROLLING NOW !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34992346)

"Please pay up"

Nature journals don't charge publishing costs.

Re:YAY !! WE ARE ROLLING NOW !! (4, Funny)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 3 years ago | (#34987790)

To what end, I ask, to what end?

Maybe now we can end the awful hegemony of the so-called "scientists" who would try to use their so-called "data" to show that God did not in fact create the world in 6 days or that the burning of fossil fuels (preferably drilled from beneath so-called "wildlife refuges") is not in fact excellent for the environment.

Re:YAY !! WE ARE ROLLING NOW !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34991002)

Oh come on now - you can't just lump creationists and non-hippies in the same category. If anything the creationists go with the bat-shit-insane hippies.

Re:YAY !! WE ARE ROLLING NOW !! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34994246)

Oh come on now - you can't just lump creationists and non-hippies in the same category.

Why not? The bat-shit crazy, right-wing Christians own the oil companies -- for example, George Bush.

I don't think the Christian Right and Big Oil are a different subset of America. Sarah Palin is definitely in favor of drilling under "wildlife refuges" and she's a Christian idiot.

The entire Tea Party is a demonstration of the fact that the creationists and non-hippies are the same brand of idiot -- you know, God created America so we can drill for oil, run the world, and cheat everybody out of their stuff.

The hippies are more likely to disagree with both of these groups, often at the same time.

Molded? Really? (0, Troll)

Insightfill (554828) | more than 3 years ago | (#34987502)

The press release makes it clear that it is molded after PLoS ONE: 'Scientific Reports will publish original research papers of interest to specialists within a given field in the natural sciences.

Of course. Molded. Covered with fur, I'm sure.

Re:Molded? Really? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34987726)

You know, if you're going to post a bitchy, pedantic spelling troll under your own account, you would embarrass yourself less if you knew how to spell. I think the word you're thinking of is "molted," meaning "having shed fur." The word in the summary is "molded," meaning "formed into a particular shape."

Re:Molded? Really? (1)

Dishevel (1105119) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988082)

Of course he may have been making a joke about mold. Which can sometimes look a bit fury.

Re:Molded? Really? (1)

guyminuslife (1349809) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988500)

Or maybe he works at a Chinese toy factory, where there are lots of rats that get stuck in the plastic molds, and you get a furry Optimus Prime.

The permutations are endless.

Re:Molded? Really? (1)

Insightfill (554828) | more than 3 years ago | (#34989874)

Thank both of you (and not the AC) for 'getting it', and double "boo" to the AC for getting the use of 'molting' barely correct.

Molting is almost never used for the shedding of fur; it is usually used for the shedding of exoskeletons and feathers, but the loss of fur is almost always referred to as simply 'shedding'.

Guyminuslife - excellent extension of the joke.

Wait and See (2)

JanneM (7445) | more than 3 years ago | (#34987526)

It being Nature group is no guarantee of success or high impact. And we have no idea if they are in it for the long haul or if they'll bail in a few years if the uptake is low. I'd just wait a couple of years and see what happens to it before submitting a paper there. Meanwhile, PLoS has a good impact factor, large readership and doesn't have a limit on the number of accepted papers so that's a better option for now.

Re:Wait and See (5, Informative)

linhares (1241614) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988436)

Another problem that lots of people have brought up is the CC non commercial license that Nature is using. This could hamper the Open Access movement (and an author's ultimate impact). Some people go as far as to claim that non-commercial licenses aren't Open Access at all [okfn.org] and can indeed hinder progress down the line. At any rate, ONE has at least three years until Nature gets its report card (=impact factor). PLoS ONE is already the largest journal in the world (by volume), and if it can maintain quality, the Public Lib of Science should be safely sustainable in the long run. But make no mistake, Nature is coming here with guns blazing [sspnet.org] .

Re:Wait and See (2)

the gnat (153162) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988734)

Another problem that lots of people have brought up is the CC non commercial license that Nature is using.

Whoa, I just read through the license terms - what do these actually mean? It is unclear to me whether the license only covers the text itself, or the scientific results described in the text. In other words, if I work at a private biotech company, and someone publishes a new and interesting technique relevant to my current research, am I not allowed to download the paper and apply it to my work? Or am I simply not allowed to redistribute the paper? The phrases "commercial exploitation" and "commercial use is not permitted" do not make this clear. I honestly do not care whether the license terms prohibit (for instance) making derivative works from the paper text, or re-publishing it in a book, etc.; I have zero patience for FSF-style ideological crusades. As a (government-funded) scientist, I simply want everyone to be able to read the paper and use the results in their own work (for-profit or not) without paying an extortionate per-article fee to Nature.

If someone with more of a clue could clarify, please chime in.

Re:Wait and See (1)

ZombieWomble (893157) | more than 3 years ago | (#34991476)

Copyright in a journal never extends to preventing others using the work - only to using the particular presentation & formatting used in the journal. You can read it, go "huh, that's interesting" and use the technique to your heart's content, on any of the licenses NPG offer, even their classic, non-CC versions. Any suggestion otherwise is pretty clearly FUD. Of course, your rights to reuse techniques are potentially covered by patents and the like, if the authors have sought them before publishing the paper, and this license does not guarantee that that won't be the case, but nor do the other, "more open" CC options.

Re:Wait and See (1)

the gnat (153162) | more than 3 years ago | (#34993682)

Okay, that makes more sense. So, basically, the argument over whether NPG's use of "non-commercial" licenses is truly "open-access" or not is indeed one of those Stallman-esque battles over purity, and not something that affects the vast majority of users (i.e. scientists). I'm not sure this contributes anything to the debate over scientific publishing models; the real problem with the current system is extortionate subscription (or per-article) costs, which put much of the literature essentially off-limits to anyone outside a major research university that can afford a site license.

I do find it amusing that NPG thinks that the "Nature" brand name will let them charge the same amount as PLoS ONE for a more restricted form of open-access. However, I suspect that most of the people who really care about open-access aren't very favorably inclined towards NPG at this point anyway.

Re:Wait and See (1)

locallyunscene (1000523) | more than 3 years ago | (#35000056)

This isn't an "FSF-style ideological crusade", it's Nature Publishing Group saying "if we can't make money off of this no one else should either". If they had used the FSF Free Document License [gnu.org] commercial use would be permitted.

In other words, if I work at a private biotech company, and someone publishes a new and interesting technique relevant to my current research, am I not allowed to download the paper and apply it to my work?

The process the researcher used may or may not be covered under a patent or other license; however, that has nothing to do with the license of the document itself. To quote the most restrictive CC-NC license:

You may not exercise any of the rights granted to You in Section 3 above in any manner that is primarily intended for or directed toward commercial advantage or private monetary compensation.

To translate the legalese slightly:
"You may not [distribute the work] in any manner that is primarily intended for [you to make money]."

IANALIJPOOS(I am not a lawyer I just play one on slashdot.)

Re:Wait and See (1)

JanneM (7445) | more than 3 years ago | (#34990084)

Well, almost all journal papers out there are under strict copyright - you have no rights whatsoever to use those texts, commercially or not, other than the normal exceptions for citation and commentary. So as far as the paper itself goes, this is already more permissive than almost any other journal out there.

And the licence applies to the paper itself, and Creative Commons in general applies to creative works, not scientific results - that kind of thing is generally covered by patents. So the results themselves are not affected. Of course that doesn't mean you can use the results freely; if there's commercial potential it's likely already being patented by the researchers or their sponsoring institutions.

Authentication by peer recognition (1)

h00manist (800926) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988440)

That's all that's really needed.

Off to a bad start already (1)

Roger W Moore (538166) | more than 3 years ago | (#34989118)

It being Nature group is no guarantee of success or high impact.

Given the press release which mentions that the publication is supposedly for "natural sciences" which includes physics, geology, chemistry etc. but then goes on to say that all articles will be deposited in PubMed Central which is for "biomedical and life sciences". If that is the level of thought behind this journal then I have to say that it is remarkably unimpressive.

Up Next? Null Findings Journal (3, Interesting)

Palmsie (1550787) | more than 3 years ago | (#34987794)

It seems journal editors have finally entered the technological age. Congrats. A similar idea they have yep to adopt (at least in social science) is a journal for null findings. The closet drawer problem still hasn't gone away.
http://www.skepdic.com/filedrawer.html [skepdic.com]

Re:Up Next? Null Findings Journal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34987956)

I think SAGE OPEN [sagepub.com] , Yet Another PLoS ONE Clone, will publish negative results in the social sciences.

Re:Up Next? Null Findings Journal (2)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988090)

I don't think having a publication in which to submit those results is going to change much though. For one thing, no one wants to be the guy who expected one thing, got a few results to the contrary, published that negative result, and then it was later proven that result was wrong and the researcher was right initially. Especially when it can negatively impact your results. "We have this grand model, and we may have disproven part of it."

Moreover, the number of controls you're willing to do to ensure your negative result is true is usually about half the number of controls you'd be willing to do to prove your positive result is true. The number of controls you NEED to do to ensure your negative result is real is often double the amount of controls you'd need to do to prove a positive result.

Lastly, negative results are often one small part of what would be a larger story. That larger story might be interesting, and negative results can definitely lead you to new interesting theories, and those do get published, but publishing single negative results often are useless.

I just got a negative result last week. It's an RNAi experiment, I attempted to reduce the amount of one gene in a cell type, hoping to see a specific change in that cell's behavior that would back up my model for what's going on in that cell. I didn't see that change (phenotype). Testing whether or not I'm successfully knocking down the gene is much more difficult compared to observing the phenotype. One explanation is that I didn't actually successfully reduce that gene, so I'm trying again and hopefully will see the phenotype. If that doesn't work, it may be that I was knocking the gene down, but the gene is not involved in that cell behavior. That would be mildly interesting to me, but very few other people are expecting that gene to be involved in that process, if anyone else is, and I'm not interested in spending several hundred dollars just to show that uninteresting result.

This does leave me open to the possibility that I wasn't successful in knocking down the gene either time but it is involved in the process. I'll have to determine then whether or not we have the money and time to spend on potentially nothing.

If we do the test and see that we are knocking down the gene and still not getting the phenotype, one could still ask whether or not there's residual amounts of that gene floating around. Testing that would be even more difficult and expensive. There's no way we're doing that test, but unless we were to do the test, we couldn't say "this gene is not involved in this process." And again, even then, no one would care about that result.

Re:Up Next? Null Findings Journal (1)

linhares (1241614) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988206)

I think you're right on the mark. This paper, ""Positive" Results Increase Down the Hierarchy of the Sciences" [plosone.org] , seems to show that people in, say, Physics or Chemistry have been publishing negative results, while Social Scientists haven't. Truly the time to open up those closet drawers.

Re:Up Next? Null Findings Journal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35002888)

This has little to do with technological age. For years, APS journals have been offering a "Free to Read" option to the authors willing to pay
for the publication charges, but as far as I can tell, only a small fraction of authors used the option. The open access has its share of problems:

1) In the "open access" model, authors turn into customers, so the editors of these journals are inclined to publish
substandard papers as long as the publication charges are paid.

2) The "open access" model is also a "closed submissions" model. There are many authors who do not have grants in a given year to pay for their publication charges.
In theory, once open access takes off, their expenses will be picked up by libraries, journals, etc., but it is difficult to predict how this will work out in practice.
Currently, the available funds are very limited. In the currently accepted model (shall we call it an "open submissions" model?) submitting a manuscript doesn't cost a dime.
For example, in any given year there are many theoretical physicists who receive a salary for their teaching responsibilities, but do not have grants.
Many of them can produce high-level research and publish their results for free. In the "open access" model such physicists will be severely
disadvantaged. Note that the problem could become progressively worse: the groups
without grants would publish fewer papers, which would lead to lower probability of getting grants next year, which would lead to fewer publications, ...
In this sense, the "open access" model is extremely antidemocratic.

3) The drawbacks of the currently accepted "Open submissions" model are highly exaggerated. How many times a non-scientist ever needed (or
was able) to read a research paper written in a highly technical language and intended for specialists? I suggest to any non-scientists to go to
http://publish.aps.org/search and pick up a paper that is free to read, such as http://prb.aps.org/abstract/PRB/v82/i4/e045108 or
http://prb.aps.org/pdf/PRB/v81/i4/e045121. Is there really any purpose for anyone outside physics, chemistry, and related fields
to have access to those papers? Does anyone really expect that putting this kind of "knowledge into the hands of everyone" could
serve any useful purpose?

4) Not all open access journals have been financially successful. I would be interested to see some quantitative analysis showing
the sustainability of "open access publishing" using concrete examples of open-access journals in the past 10 years other than PLoS One.

5) PLoS One currently has an impact factor 4.3, which was described as "stunning" by some blogs. Let us not forget that the PLoS One benefits from
transfers of rejected papers from PLoS journals that have impact factors ranging from 10 to 13. In such a top-to-bottom model, the impact factor
of the second-tier journal is typically 40-50% of top-tier IF. If anything, the impact factor of 4.3 is what one would expect. Compare this to the
performance of Physical Review (IF from 3 to 5) family relative to Physical Review Letters (IF=7), or Nature Physics/Materials/Nanotechnology/... to Nature.

6) PLoS One publishes papers in the fields that have enjoyed rather generous funding for many years. It is yet to be seen how well the open-access model
is suited for other fields such as math or physics that receive much less money. Compare, for example the budgets of NIH (http://www.nih.gov/about/budget.htm)
to NSF (http://www.nsf.gov/about/congress/110/highlights/cu07_0308.jsp#final). Given the opportunity to publish their research for free in reputable journals,
why would anyone be willing to pay in order to publish in a journal of similar standing?

Sorry Nature (5, Insightful)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 3 years ago | (#34987796)

...but fuck you. Will you make your oldest articles available for download? I still can't get over that 1928 article on capillary effect that is STILL BEHIND A PAYWALL! Nature embodies all that is wrong with scientific journals. Not the worst, but definitely emblematic.

Re:Sorry Nature (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34988028)

Which one? Capillary Properties of Moist Granular Media or Displacement of Liquids in Capillaries. I have a .edu IP and have the PDFs. I'll email both if you like.

Re:Sorry Nature (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988186)

Well, I needed it for a grad course, but it's past tense now. However, I would like to have the Shereshefsky article, as my institution doesn't have access to older Nature articles, so unless you send it to me, I don't know when will I satisfy my curiosity to see it. My e-mail address is howdilydoo at gmail

Re:Sorry Nature (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34988722)

Merry Christmas.

Re:Sorry Nature (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34988160)

Go to a Library

Re:Sorry Nature (1)

linhares (1241614) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988502)

Go to a Library

Just make sure that it's not from the UC system [google.com] .

Re:Sorry Nature (1)

Raenex (947668) | more than 3 years ago | (#34994794)

The second link says "University of California Scientists won't be boycotting Nature".

Re:Sorry Nature (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34988506)

That's easy to say if your office is 50 feet from a top departmental library. Harder if you live, for example, in the third world, or you're an independent researcher. People outside ivy-league academic jobs often make the most profound discoveries (Einstein, Perelman...) so it might not be such a brilliant idea to deny them access to journals. Some might even call it slightly fascist.

Re:Sorry Nature (1)

linhares (1241614) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988818)

Nature embodies all that is wrong with scientific journals.

Well, have you heard of the PRISM fiasco? Nature PG is a saint compared to those guys. You can get some starting pointers here: http://phylogenomics.blogspot.com/2007/08/calling-for-boycott-of-of-aap.html [blogspot.com]

Re:Sorry Nature (1)

blind biker (1066130) | more than 3 years ago | (#34991990)

My understanding was that Nature had its dirty fingers deep in the PRISM initiative. So it's not better or worse - Nature is a supporter of the same.

Re:Sorry Nature (2)

digitalderbs (718388) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988982)

it's worse. This systems appears to require a $1350 "Article Processing Charge" for the authors. Talk about milking it.

Re:Sorry Nature (1)

Timmmm (636430) | more than 3 years ago | (#34992282)

So does PLoS One. In fact most journals allow you to pay $2k or so to make your article open access. PLoS One hasn't fixed the system at all, and neither will this.

I would suggest:

1. A more reasonable fee - $100 maybe.
2. Allow commenting, annotating and rating articles.
3. 'Trusted reviewers', i.e. people who are experts in the field (as far as it is possible to tell). Their comments would be highlighted and their ratings more significant.

What about PNAS (2)

DriedClexler (814907) | more than 3 years ago | (#34987888)

I thought PNAS was stupid because it looks like you're supposed to pronounce it P-NAS, which sounds like "penis", but no one listened to my warning.

Re:What about PNAS (1)

Biff Stu (654099) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988624)

In that case it's a damn shame that the seminal paper on Proton Enhanced Nuclear Induction Spectroscopy was actually published in Chemical Physics Letters. This is probably because they never bothered submitting it to Science. As we all know, PNAS = Papers Not Accepted by Science

Re:What about PNAS (1)

linhares (1241614) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988842)

I for one find it awesome that many people are trying Science, Nature, or PNAS, then, if rejected, go for PLoS ONE. Here's a case of an, IMO, awesome paper that was originally submitted to PNAS [economist.com] (may have to google the url to get through) but ended up in PLoS ONE [plosone.org] . This is the sort of paper that shows the power of computer science applied to social science.

Re:What about PNAS (1)

White Flame (1074973) | more than 3 years ago | (#34989716)

In that case it's a damn shame that the seminal paper on Proton Enhanced Nuclear Induction Spectroscopy was actually published in Chemical Physics Letters.

You just had to, didn't you?

Re:What about PNAS (1)

Dhalka226 (559740) | more than 3 years ago | (#34989722)

I don't know if it's hilarious or says something about me (or both), but I read that as "no one listened to my wanking."

I was puzzled why you seemed upset.

di34 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34988856)

please 8odeCrate To work I'm doing,

Open Access Journals (1)

pc1976 (1391585) | more than 3 years ago | (#34988936)

So this is mainly a long-awaited response to BioMed Central and its subsequent acquisition by Springer (http://www.biomedcentral.com) and others like it (there are a few) using the Open Access model prototyped by Gene Garfield, Vitek Tracz and others, surely. Nothing new, merely late bandwagon-jumping, surely.

PONE (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34988942)

Looks like Nature just PONE'd themselves!!

Re:PONE (1)

linhares (1241614) | more than 3 years ago | (#34989060)

+1 internets coming up here

No mention of arxiv.org yet? (1)

Z8 (1602647) | more than 3 years ago | (#34989834)

At least in the fields I pay attention to (mainly statistics) the best open access journal is arXiv.org [arxiv.org] . I thought it was also the highest profile free computer science journal.

Most people use it for publishing articles while they get them published in a peer reviewed journal, but they have been the main publisher for some very high profile work, such as Perelman's papers [arxiv.org] proving the Poincare conjecture.

Re:No mention of arxiv.org yet? (2)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 3 years ago | (#34990204)

ArXiv is not an open-access journal. The phrase "open-access journal" has a very specific meaning, and using arXiv as an example of such does nothing but muddy the waters. Specifically, putting an article up on it doesn't really count as publishing -- you don't put "deposited on arXiv" on your CV. Open-access journals such as those published by PLoS and BMC have the same editorial and peer-review standards as traditional journals (higher standards, in many cases) and their success has scared the hell out of a lot of the traditional journal publishers, who are now scrambling to catch up.

Note that this isn't intended to sell arXiv short. It's a wonderful service, and I'm glad to see it expanding into many different fields. But it's important to keep the terminology straight. Groups like PRISM are already pushing the "open acess = no peer review" meme; don't play their game.

Re:No mention of arxiv.org yet? (3, Informative)

Z8 (1602647) | more than 3 years ago | (#34990778)

YourI take your point that arXiv.org is not peer reviewed and the PLoS journal are. However, arXiv.org is definitely "open access". Besides obviously meeting the definition [wikipedia.org] , even their web page [arxiv.org] advertises it as open access. Also, not all journals are peer-reviewed.

Maybe you are arguing that "open access journal" means something different than "open access"+"journal", but who is muddying the waters at that point? It's easier just to say that arXiv.org is not peer-reviewed while some other open access sites are.

PRISM may be wrong that open access = no peer review, but it's also a mistake to assume open access = peer review. Open access and peer review are just two different things.

Re:No mention of arxiv.org yet? (2)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 3 years ago | (#34990926)

Of course arXiv is open-access, but only in the same sense as everything on the internet that isn't deliberately locked up. And in terms of academic publishing, "journal" pretty much implies "peer-reviewed" -- while it is true that not every journal is peer-reviewed, those that aren't peer-reviewed really aren't a meaningful part of the discussion. In short, arXiv isn't a journal at all (by any definition) and I don't think anyone involved with it would claim that it is. OTOH, it wouldn't surprise me at all if PRISM et al. would like people to think that it is, because that would be very useful for the anti-open-access-publishing propaganda campaign.

Re:No mention of arxiv.org yet? (1)

smallfries (601545) | more than 3 years ago | (#34993540)

I read his argument to be more along the lines that ArXiv is not a "journal" rather than it being a debate about open access. On their main page (the one you linked to) they describe themselves as an e-print repository (i.e a collection of preprints) rather than a Journal.

I'm surprised to see that PLoS-one is peer-reviewed. I thought that it wasn't last time that I checked. Is that a policy that they've changed, or is my memory just crap?

Re:No mention of arxiv.org yet? (1)

bjorniac (836863) | more than 3 years ago | (#34996210)

This is kinda a side note, but I'm in physics and I certainly DO list papers posted to the arXiv on my CV. Especially when they're under review at a journal. I list published papers both with journal references and arXiv numbers and obviously those that are 'pending' I give arXiv references for. I agree that it's NOT the same as a peer reviewed journal, but it certainly offers better access for a lot of people.

The problem with the lack of open access is that it means that researchers more and more often will just go for arXiv papers instead of their peer reviewed cousins. I almost never download from a journal's website, and haven't ever read anything in print (except my own articles for vanity's sake) for research.

I'll take the past, please... (2)

Garwulf (708651) | more than 3 years ago | (#34990604)

If this is the future of academic journal publishing, I'll take the past, please. I don't mind accessibility, and I don't mind creative commons, but I do mind it when the journal reaches a point of being a parasite. I'm talking about author fees.

As far as I know, most journals pay for their publications via subscriptions from university libraries. They don't do it using a vanity press model, where they take money from the authors for publication. Both of the online journals mentioned here - PLoS and Scientific Reports, are charging scientists over a thousand dollars for publication.

I'm sorry, but speaking as an author, a researcher (who has co-written a peer reviewed journal article waiting for publication in a Classics journal), and a publisher, this is just wrong. It's taking advantage of academics who are desperate to publish in a "publish or perish" environment, and relieving them of their money. And, because the journal article authors are paying for publication, it will likely carry a taint that may undermine the legitimacy of any peer review the article passed.

Frankly, if this sort of parasitic business model is the projected future of academic publishing, I think it's best if it's skipped. The old model was better.

Ehhh it's a yawner (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34991734)

Lots of the commercial journals charge page fees. Academic researchers (it doesn't sound like you are one, even though you have a paper in press) get those fees paid by their departments. They don't come out of pocket. For the research institutions, it's just one of the many expenses associated with research, including lab equipment, secretarial support, photocopying, scotch tape, etc, more than retrieved by the subscriptions savings fees at the other end. Also, PLOS One waives the publishing fee for authors with insufficient funds:

We offer a complete or partial fee waiver for authors who do not have funds to cover publication fees. Editors and reviewers have no access to author payment information, and hence inability to pay will not influence the decision to publish a paper.

source [plos.org] .

Vanity publishing? (1)

goose-incarnated (1145029) | more than 3 years ago | (#34990982)

FTA:

The 2011 APC rate will be US$1350/GB£890/ EURO1046 per accepted manuscript*. Authors will have a choice of two non-commercial Creative Commons (CC) licenses. NPG will make an annual donation to Creative Commons equivalent to $20 per APC paid for publication in Scientific Reports

So, I'll pay (roughly) my net income for a single month to publish, of which $20 goes to CC? This is ridiculous!

PLoS ONE: (1)

tehcyder (746570) | more than 3 years ago | (#34992204)

Would it really have hurt to explain what PLoS ONE:stands for just once?

Re:PLoS ONE: (1)

Kilrah_il (1692978) | more than 3 years ago | (#34993896)

Wikipedia [wikipedia.org] and Google Google [google.com] to the rescue: Public Library of Science.

Internet, use it!

Ironic? Yes! (1)

Kilrah_il (1692978) | more than 3 years ago | (#34993864)

Perhaps readers may find it ironic that PLoS ONE, first dismissed by Nature as an 'online database' 'relying on bulk, cheap publishing of lower quality papers to subsidize its handful of high-quality flagship journals' seems to be setting the standards for 'a new era in publishing.'

Yes! It is ironic.

Free the scientific press! (1)

barry61 (1447103) | more than 3 years ago | (#34997184)

The importance of the PLoS is that the content is freely available. This is invaluable for anyone interested in trying to understand scientific advances, but not interested, or not able, to pay $30+ per article. The PLoS means that I can review complete text articles with supporting documents, rather than rely on press releases for information. This means I can write a better review (http://www.lancashiremcs.org.uk/ [lancashiremcs.org.uk] - focussed on marine science), which I hope makes for better public understanding and access, and a higher profile for the scientists publishing there. I hope PLoS will result in 'open source science', and am happy to do my bit in promoting it whenever I can!
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